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Saint Paul College A Community & Technical College

Tenth Week of Fall Semester

The transition to a “one-stop shop” to better meet the needs of our students has taken place, with many offices shuffling main-floor locations to streamline services for students, has gone very smoothly. Serving our students is our number one priority at the College. My humble apologies for any inconvenience you might have experience. Thanks to our staff for the great work they continue to do even during these office location changes.

Most of my week was spent at the national AACC ATE Principal Investigators and AACC MentorLinks conferences in Washington, D.C.

Here’s a short recap of my activities and meetings this week:

  • Baraza: A Black Woman’s Health Gathering – on Saturday, October 22, I attended Baraza: A Black Woman’s He​alth Gathering and presented the keynote. Baraza is a community-driven event focused on improving the health and wellness of Twin Cities African and African American women. This year’s theme is “Healthy Lifestyle; Mind, Body and Spirit.” I was inspired when I asked the audience, “how many of you have visited Saint Paul College?” an overwhelming number of attendees indicated they visited Saint Paul College previously. We are truly a college of our community.
  • Mixed Blood Theater performance – The Office of Student Life and Diversity sponsored the Mixed Blood Theater on-campus presentation of Corazon Éterno, a 90-minute play based on the work of Gabriel Garcia Márquez. The performance was in English and Spanish with projected subtitles, and was free and open to the public.
  • Kettering Foundation – Students and faculty traveled to Kettering Foundation, which is dedicated to find ways to strengthen democracy: what can we collectively do to promote citizen employees, and citizen students in our institutions of higher education? As our students graduate from Saint Paul College, regardless of their majors or program of study, it is imperative that our students view themselves, and take charge of their future roles in our communities, as citizen graduates who take part in fulfilling their civic duties by being informed and engaged citizens.
  • Advanced Technical Education (ATE) Principal Investigators Conference - The American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), with the support of the National Science Foundation, held the 23rd National ATE Principal Investigators Conference in Washington, DC, which I attended, accompanied by two Saint Paul College STEM faculty who are currently leading the Saint Paul College Mentor Connect grant in the Science Technician program. I am proud of our STEM faculty leaders and our student representative for their contributions, dedication, commitment, expertise, and talent. The conference brings together approximately 900 people to focus on the critical issues related to advanced technological education. Key people working on ATE projects across the country participate in the conference. Conference attendees represent community colleges, business and industry, secondary school systems, four-year colleges, and research and development centers covering projects in a wide variety of areas such as: information technology, engineering technology, micro- and nanotechnologies, chemical technology, biotechnology, and others. View the ATE 2016 Program Growing Leaders; Leading Change
  • AACC MentorLinks Conference - I also attended the MentorLinks conference in Washington, DC. I serve as the master mentor for the Mentors in the MentorLinks program/projects. The MentorLinks Advancing Technological Education program, supported by the National Science Foundation, is designed to help colleges develop or strengthen technician training programs in STEM fields through mentoring, professional development opportunities, and technical assistance; to establish connections for colleges to identify new ideas and relationships through networking opportunities at program meetings and Advanced Technological Education (ATE) National Conferences; and to help colleges gain insight about support for building and sustaining new programs.

Upcoming Events on Campus:

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Please join us at our Open House on November 2, 2016.
Learn about college admissions, registration, financial aid and scholarship availability.

You can tour state-of-the-art classrooms and facilities, view demonstrations in newly renovated laboratories, and talk with program instructors and student services staff.

In the news

In the Pioneer Press:
More MN State college students skipping remedial courses
I would like to draw your attention to this article about how more college students are skipping remedial courses. At Saint Paul College, we are examining the remedial course sequences, have been working and partnering with intentionality with public school districts, charter schools, Non-Profit Community Based Organizations to initiate and enhance College Readiness opportunities of our students, both traditional and non-traditional students.

MPR News:
College costs a key issue for Minnesota middle class voters
Minnesota Public Radio broadcasted a special piece on how presidential candidates have talked about college tuition and debt and offered possible fixes to ease the burden on students and families. But there's ample doubt that any of the grand plans are politically achievable. As for Saint Paul College, I know that we provide accessible, affordable, and extraordinary education within the reach of our students, without them having to mortgage their future.

Innovative Partnering and Collaboration Award​
Saint Paul College’s College Readiness Academy was recently awarded the Innovative Partnering and Collaboration Award by Minnesota State for producing strong community partnerships. In collaboration with the International Institute of Minnesota, Neighborhood House, the Hubbs Center, St. Paul Community Literacy Consortium, and MSPWin, the College Readiness Academy provides college preparation to New Americans and other individuals who would like to begin college-level classes but are not yet college-ready. In its first year of operation, 36 students successfully completed the College Readiness Academy program. 30 of those students are now enrolled in college and the remaining six have plans to enroll. There were also six students already in college and received co-requisite support through the College Readiness Academy. Saint Paul College was presented the Innovative Partnering and Collaboration Award at the Minnesota State Academic and Student Affairs Leadership Conference on October 20, 2016.

I end this blog by thanking members of our college community for going the extra mile for assisting our students with their needs and welcoming our guests who visited Saint Paul College as I was in travel mode this week. The members of Saint Paul College are doers. They extend themselves and have a tremendous capacity to ensure that our students are successful and attain their educational goals. A special thanks to our faculty and staff for your heartfelt passion for your work. After all, if we do not take care of our students and our community, who will?

Thank you and I wish you a relaxing weekend.

Best,
Rassoul Dastmozd
President/CEO
651.846.1335
rassoul.dastmozd@saintpaul.edu​


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